US lets Santa and Reindeer in before Christmas

USDA said the reindeer will pull a wooden sleigh with jingling bells and brightly wrapped goodies.

Santa Claus may now fly his reindeer into the US without legal complications thanks to the USDA. 

On Thursday, the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service granted "Mr S Nicholas Claus of the North Pole, a distributor with Gifts and Good Cheer, Inc." a transit permit.

According to Jenny Lester Moffitt, undersecretary for marketing and regulatory programs, "USDA is delighted to grant Mr. Claus and his reindeer a special permit to enter the United States, ensuring a seamless journey for the joy they bring each holiday season."

"We extend a warm welcome to Mr. Claus and recognize the vital role of US milk and cookies in fueling his festive flight.

"Veterinary inspectors checked the reindeer's entry requirements before awarding the permit.

According to USDA Chief Veterinary Officer Dr. Rosemary Sifford, "At a recent inspection, the reindeer were found to be healthy and able to prance and paw with each hoof."

Rudolph has a small physical aberration, according to the health certificate. APHIS said Rudolph's bright red nose was normal and not a problem.

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